Need advice concerning lawn treatments...

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by FIRESCOOBY, Aug 24, 2007.


    FIRESCOOBY LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    Bare with me, help needed.

    I currently operate a solo LCO, and partnered with fellow FF on a large school system also.

    We both live in fairly rural parts of N. Ga, him more than I. He has had many of his customers request lawn treatments. As far as we can find out, no one services his area (he borders NC also). I've also found it difficult to find anyone that services anywhere north of my house. Where he lives it is mostly a second home, retired, or just plain wealthy population in mountain areas. Most of these people's primary homes are in Atlanta where they have these services performed. As far as we can find out, it is relatively untapped.

    We are contemplating starting a lawn treatment service, either together or just me.

    I've been looking into getting my pesticide license this fall/winter.


    1- Initial start-up costs? Not sure if a Isuzu truck or 1 ton truck with tank mounted on back would be the best bet. Either would probably be a good used unit.

    2- Any particulars on pump/tank setups?

    3- I have a LESCO located about 15 miles south of this the best place to get supplies?

    We've also been told to offer tree treatments. A few people have said to equip a four wheeler with a high pressure mounted tank to spray trees. Is this a profitable service?

    Rest assured that we/I would NOT be offering this until we/I obtained my license. Really want to get into an additional aspect of lawncare that is profitable.

    Any help/ advice is greatly appreciated.
  2. ampeg76

    ampeg76 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 297

    mmm, i've had a "few" beers, stout ones at that:)

    the questions you have are easily answered by shopping around, via the net or locally!

    i use mostly granular and have no issues

    time for bed

  3. olive123

    olive123 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 500

    sounds like your looking to spend a LOT of capital before you have a plan.
    Your making it sound a little easier than it is. Be careful.
  4. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,812

    I say:go for it. Either a one ton or Isuzu would work well. Scroll up and click Gregson Clark for a look at sprayers, or talk to Lesco. 200 gallon skid sprayer would be fine. Add a Lesco fertilizer spreader and you are ready to go. Lesco is a good place to get fert and weedo--not the lowest prices, but they can help you plan a lawn care program. A program suited for your part of state.
  5. boats47

    boats47 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 244

    go into the search for this website you will find eveything you need.

    Good luck
  6. Harley-D

    Harley-D LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 508

    When you get the study materials for the applicators test, you will find out alot more. Then use that knowledge to price out your applications/material/timing/equipment. Good luck.
  7. Rayholio

    Rayholio LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,461

    my opinion.... you asked for it :)

    Don't go into debt, or break yourself to start this thing... you have to be able to justify your expenses with income.

    Buy a truck... 1/2 ton will work, and even smaller in a pinch... (I started with a dodge dakota + reinforced springs) Grab a 250 dollar spyker spreader off ebay, and a backpack sprayer, and you're in business. design your treatment plan around granular, pushing off any liquid treatments to the fall.

    Start marketing. Vinyl on truck (very important IMO) Yellow pages (no more than $30 a month) Door hangers, and find mower guys who will recommend you. Get their mailing lists, and use 'em.

    Next step is to get licensed this winter. very important.

    Send out pre-pays, get the 5-20 pre signed customers to pay in advance, and you easily will have enough to pay for your insurance, and licensing.

    Then start working. When you out grow your equipment, use your profits to buy new. Live off of your wives income, or your 2nd income (job) for the 1st couple years. do not take out loans for the business, or live off your income. that will allow your business to 'snowball'. You'll be suprized how quickly your business grows when it's backed up by liquid capitol.

    If you want to dump a bunch of money day 1, do it in TARGETED marketing 1st. no need to have the equipment to serve 200 customers when you're only gonna have 25 to start with.. We all love the equipment aspect of our jobs... but it's not the most important part.

    There ya go... it's about howI started mine.. 1st yr 14 customers, 2nd year 60, and in my 3rd year I'm at 130 now.. and going up..
  8. ATVracer

    ATVracer LawnSite Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 346

    Great advice Rayholio. That's pretty much what I did.

    FIRESCOOBY LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    Sounds like great advice.

    I plan on keeping my FT FF job (of course) and keep doing lawn maintenance but being very selective in the jobs I accept.

    I have a 3/4 ton truck that I pull my enclosed truck with. After reading your advice I'm thinking a skid unit with maybe a split tank to mount in the bed of the truck might be the best bet.

    I might try to find a stripped down 1/2 ton pick-up truck to place the skid unit in. Still alot of planning to do...if I end up going down this road.

    Thanks to all!!!
  10. Fvstringpicker

    Fvstringpicker LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,670

    Keep in mind in Georgia you'll also need to be licensed as a pesticide contractor by the state dept of agriculture. Not a big deal if you have your pesticide applicators license and pesticide insurance coverage. In addition to category 24 (Ornamental and Turf) you'll need category 27 (Right of way) since parts of many yards and areas you'll be asked to treat are on right of way. Get the right of way study material. If you pass category 24, category 27 is a snap.

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